At least 33 people have been killed and 73 have been wounded in an explosion in a Shia mosque in Kandahar on Friday.

The explosion tore through the southern Afghan city of Kandahar during Friday prayers. The number of casualties is expected to rise as per the officials.

According to a local reporter, eyewitnesses have reported three suicide bombers, one of whom blew himself up at the entrance to the mosque while the other two detonated their devices inside the building.

He said, “The situation is very bad. Mirwais hospital is messaging and calling on young people to give blood.” Mirwais hospital is the hospital where the dead and wounded have been taken.

A health official provided figures of 33 dead and 73 wounded and said the numbers could increase. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack.

Taliban interior ministry spokesman Qari Saeed Khosti said authorities were working on collecting details of the explosion, which took place just a few days following a suicide bomb attack claimed by the Islamic State (ISIS) on a Sia mosque in the northern city of Kunduz that killed a large number of people.

Photographs and mobile phone footage posted on social media by a number of journalists show many people dead or seriously wounded on the bloody floor of the Imambargah mosque.

Taliban special forces arrived to secure the site and an appeal went out to residents to donate blood for the wounded.

The blast that has taken place just a few days following the Kunduz attack has amplified increasingly uncertain security in Afghanistan as the Taliban wrestle with an escalating economic and humanitarian crisis that threatens millions with hunger.

The local affiliate of ISIS, known as Islamic State Khorasan, has launched multiple attacks following the Taliban victory over the Western-backed government in Kabul in August.

Taliban officials have played down the threat from Islamic State, however, the repeated attacks have stained its claim to have brought peace to Afghanistan after four decades of war.

The fact that the Shia minority has been targeted yet again may increase tensions among various ethnic and sectarian groups in the country.

According to officials, a day earlier, a vehicle carrying a Taliban police chief in eastern Afghanistan became the subject of a bomb attack killing the chief and wounding 11 others.

An official from the militant group reported that the blast took place in Asadabad, the capital of Kunar province, targeting the Taliban police chief for Shigal district.

The story was filed by the News Desk.
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